I AM THE CHEESE: Portlandâs own Steve Jones is officially the best cheesemonger in the world. Now, devotees of Jonesâ Cheese Bar already knew this. But itâs nice to have it confirmed at the second annual Cheesemonger Invitational, held last Friday, July 8, in Long Island City, N.Y. Jones bested more than 40 competitors from around the globe in sniffing, tasting, cutting and plating cheese. His winning slate (a.k.a. cheese plate) featured âmountain cheese with [Portlandâs] Xocolatl de DavÃd bacon caramel popcorn.â
SECRET BACON: For those who feel no burger is complete without cured pork belly, Little Big Burger now offers bacon âpretty regularly nowâ according to a cook at the Mississippi Avenue location. But you wonât find it on the menuâuntil the bacon option is officially announced, youâll have to ask for it.
SKYLINE COMES TO TOWN: According to an OLCC application, the owners of West Hills burger joint Skyline Restaurant are opening a second restaurant in the former Jayâs Mexican Restaurant space on Northeast Broadway.
THEYâRE IN THE MONEY: Broadway Rose Theatre Companyâs world-premiere staging of Ripper, a new musical by Duane Nelsen about Jack the Ripper, got a major vote of confidence last week when the National Endowment for the Arts awarded the Tigard company a $30,000 grant to support the production. Ripper runs Aug. 3-21 at the Deb Fennel Auditorium in Tigard.
IN THE MIX: Longtime Portland turntablist DJ Wicked scored enough votes in a contest on YouTube last week to secure a spot as the final competitor on the BET Networkâs forthcoming Master of the Mix reality show. The contest required Wicked, a âvinyl purist to the core,â to learn to use digital software on the fly for his YouTube presentationâbut apparently heâs a quick study. No word yet on when the second season of the show will air (Season 1 premiered last November), but you can bet Portlandâs oft-neglected hip-hop community will be watching when it does.
ED-JECTED: The Ed Forman Show, with ME! ED FORMAN! has always been something of a parody of Los Angeles lounge acts, so it only makes sense that, after three years at Danteâs, Forman alter ego Aaron Ross is moving his show...to Los Angeles. The final Danteâs show will be Dec. 27; Ross hopes to have an L.A. venue confirmed by then. âI wanted to have the opportunity to make [Ed Forman] a television show,â he says, âor whatever it can be in the Age of Aquarius.â The show has become a Burnside standby whose guests in the past month have included Dave Dahl of Daveâs Killer Bread and actor Peter Stormare, best known as the wood-chipper operator in Fargo. âI spent five days emailing back and forth with who I think is one of the five most terrifying guys in modern cinema, and [Stormare] was the nicest guy,â Ross said.